Situational Awareness in Raids

September 28, 2010

So, I was snooping around in the Blog Azeroth Shared Topic Archives when I came across an interesting topic.

“As a raid healer, a common thing these days is trying to balance keeping everyone in your raid alive, while still being able to move when you need to (ie. having the right amount of situational awareness to your surroundings during raids).

I thought it would be neat to see how all the classes (even tanks and DPS) handle the multi-tasking that is required during raids. Do tanks and DPS sometimes have tunnel vision and forget to watch for the AOE effects or whatever they need to move out of? How do other healers deal with avoiding the tunnel vision problem?

I decided to give it a go seeing as  I have a bit of spare time to update here again. As I play as all three roles, I thought I would go through each role and the differences in awareness I have.


As a tank, I tend to have pretty good situational awareness. I normally am able to quickly see that a mob is making a break for one of my party members and taunt it back I tend to be able to see that I am standing in the fire and move accordingly. . Sometimes I won’t move or will be very careful in moving, for two reasons. One, in certain encounters, it is a bad idea to move around too much, due to DPS, boss mechanics, etc. Two, if the boss is at or under 5% I’ll tend to just stay there and try to put out as much damage as possible.

Awareness: Good


When playing as DPS, I have over the top situational awareness. I seem to notice all the things that are relevant to the other roles in the party rather than those things I should be looking for. I blame this on the fact that I spend much more time healing or tanking than I spend as DPS. I also like to blame this on my ADD.

Awareness: Over the top


This is currently what I have done most in the game in terms of roles until now. It is also the role in which I have the worst situational awareness of anyone in my guild and in most randoms I join. I just get drawn in by those little dancing health bars at the bottom of my screen. I remember back when I was raiding Ulduar with my guild, there was one run where I seemed to be unable to look anywhere other than the grid window. In the space of one boss fight, I died (and was combat ressed) no less than 3 times. These deaths were all caused by the exact same aoe from the boss and after each one I said to myself, “this time, I’m going to make sure I move when that happens!”. I never listened to myself. This is also one of the reasons why I switched to tanking as my main role in dungeons and raids. I am pretty sure I’m more effective when I’m not dying all the time to silly mistakes.

Awareness: Non existent


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